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Rockwall Police Department Gets Innovative With Leadership’s Brain Health

Two male police officers stand smiling with their arms folded.

Center for BrainHealth and Rockwall Police Department

The Rockwall Police Department is making an investment in its leadership. On Tuesday, January 11, members of the RPD command staff were the first to embark on a four-month course geared toward improving brain health, function and overall cognition. The training comes from the Center for BrainHealth®, a cognitive neuroscience center of The University of Texas at Dallas, and will apply decades of research and clinical assessment aimed at improving how the human brain receives, categorizes and prioritizes information, makes decisions and solves problems, while building appropriate responses. All levels of leadership, from first-line supervisors and officers serving in leadership positions, all the way to the Chief of Police in the Rockwall Police Department, are slated to go through the course. The training is based on Strategic Memory Advanced Reasoning Tactics (SMART™) protocols, a holistic approach to understanding and strengthening the capacity for strategic attention, integrated reasoning and innovation – all key elements in our lifelong ability to be the architects of our own brain’s health and fitness. Multiple exercises throughout the process will help participants understand how they approach cognitive thought processes, and how improving that process can enrich professional performance and personal relationships, while improving sleep patterns, productivity and overall mood. “Modern policing is a thinking person’s endeavor,” said Rockwall Police Chief Max Geron. “We have to invest in the health and cognition at all levels of our leadership to improve what we do and prepare the next generation of law enforcement.”Katie Hinds, a BrainHealth clinician and lead trainer in the program, said, “This is the first program of its kind for law enforcement, and it is grounded in three decades of scientific discovery. We’ve had the privilege of working with other officers and first responders across the country, but the depth of this program and length of engagement highlights RPD’s forward-thinking vision and commitment to officer wellness and performance.” After attending the introductory session, members of the RPD command staff say they are looking forward to the program. “I think if the training can teach us ways to be more efficient, have better mental clarity, and have better mind organization that would benefit us all greatly,” said Lieutenant Jeff Lutes. Rockwall PD is the first police department in the region to make such an investment in its leadership and is proud to show its commitment to its personnel at all levels of the organization. In keeping with the police department’s strategic plan, this new program is part of an overall effort to focus on the mental health and well-being of all levels of the police department. CONTACT Stephanie Hoefken 972.883.3221 stephanie.hoefken@utdallas.eduABOUT CENTER FOR BRAINHEALTH Center for BrainHealth®, part of The University of Texas at Dallas, is a translational research institute committed to enhancing, preserving, and restoring brain health across the lifespan. Major research areas include the use of functional and structural neuroimaging techniques to better understand the neurobiology supporting cognition and emotion in health and disease. This leading-edge scientific exploration is translated quickly into practical innovations to improve how people think, work and live, empowering people of all ages to unlock their brain potential. Translational innovations build on Strategic Memory Advanced Reasoning Tactics (SMART™), a proprietary methodology developed and tested by BrainHealth researchers and other teams over three decades.

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Katie Hinds, MS, CCC-SLP

Program Manager, Cognitive Training Programs

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